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The Y in Leicester has been granted funding to support
young people with complex needs across the region.

The Y, here in Leicester has received confirmation of funding to address the increasing complex needs of young people across the east and west midlands. The £443,475 award from Big Lottery Fund will provide specialist help for complex and challenging young people to access and sustain accommodation.

This project will help six YMCAs across the midlands region to better support young people with complex needs whilst also ensuring that a change of organisational culture towards these young people takes place.

What is Complex Needs?

When a young person has two or more support needs in addition to homelessness they are at a much higher risk of self-destructive behaviours, losing their accommodation and falling into a cycle of homelessness.
Examples of some other support needs are:
• Mental health issues
• Substance misuse
• Offending behaviour
• Learning disabilities
• Domestic abuse
• Childhood poverty
• Looked after child
• Sexual exploitation

In June 2017 The Henry Smith Charity awarded The Y three years of funding for our own specialist complex needs worker. This post has contributed significantly in managing high risk/ high support cases by having dedicated time and a therapeutic approach to address behaviour, preventing unplanned exits from the service.

Regional Complex Needs Project

The project aims to make a direct difference to the lives of 216 young people throughout the midlands who are identified as having complex needs. Over 2000 other young people will also benefit from the sharing of best practice through the regional and national YMCA network.

This is the first regional project that has been developed within the central region of YMCAs and will enable them to fully implement their regional Health & Wellbeing Strategy.

The YMCAs that will take part include The Y in Leicester who are leading the project, plus 6 others:
YMCA Lincolnshire
YMCA Birmingham
YMCA Burton Upon Trent & District
YMCA Wellington & District
YMCA North Staffordshire
YMCA Sutton Coldfield

Paul Brown, Chief Executive of The Y says:
“This will be a wonderful opportunity for YMCAs to work collaboratively, ensuring that young people receive an intensive wrap around service. Far too often, disengaged young people are falling through the cracks of services which results in increased mental health issues, substance misuse and isolation.

We have worked so hard over the last few years to develop our own complex needs service here in Leicester and we’re delighted to have the opportunity to assist other YMCAs to roll this out to their own young people.”

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